Dog Fungal Infection Symptoms

Dog fungal infections are common and can be caused by several different fungi, the most frequent being yeast cells, blastomycosis, histoplasmosis, coccidiomycosis and cryptococcosis. The fungi may infect the skin or the organs of the dog. The symptoms of the fungal infections depend on the source.

Yeast Infection Symptoms

The yeast infection is the most common fungal infection in dogs, and is caused by an overgrowth of yeast cells. The yeast infection can be present on the dog's skin, in the mouth, ears, nose, rectal or vaginal area. The symptoms of a yeast infection include:

  • Itchy skin
  • Greasy skin due to an imbalanced sebum production
  • Foul odor on the skin or mouth, depending on the infected area
  • White-yellowish discharges from the mouth, ears, nose, rectum or vagina
  • Rashes or dermatitis
  • Coughing

Blastomycosis Signs

Blastomycosis is a systemic fungal infection that is caused by Blastomyces dermatitidis. It's a fungus that can be transmitted through infested soil or fungal spores that may be present in the air.  

The signs of blastomycosis include fever, coughing, panting and pneumonia. In advanced cases, the dog may also lack appetite, lose weight, have eye lesions, and experience seizures or lameness in the limbs.

The infection can be fatal and can also be transmitted to humans, if there is an open wound on a person's body that comes in contact with an infected dog.

Histoplasmosis Symptoms

Histoplasmosis is a systemic disease that is caused by Histoplasma capsulatum and can be contracted through infested dust or soil.

The symptoms of histoplasmosis will occur within 10 days of contracting the infection and will include:

  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Depression
  • Weight loss
  • Lameness
  • Eye and nasal discharges

If the infection is contracted through inhalation, it will start in the lungs and will spread to other organs as well.

Signs of Coccidiomycosis

Coccidiomycosis is caused by the Coccidiodes immites fungi and will lead to a systemic infection, affecting the lungs. The disease can spread to other organs also.

The symptoms of the infection include coughing, lethargy and lack of appetite.

Symptoms of Cryptococcosis

Cryptococcosis is caused by a yeast-like fungus that can be present in soil and may be spread by birds, especially pigeons. The fungi can also be inhaled.

The symptoms of cryptococcosis include:

  • Sneezing
  • Coughing
  • Gasping for air
  • Discharges from the nose and the eyes

In advanced cases, the infection may lead to blindness, confusion and lack of coordination and balance. If the infection affects the skin; there will be rashes, red spots and lesions. There may also be granulomas on the surface of the skin. The fungi can affect the nervous system and may be fatal, if not detected in time.

If detected in timely manner, all fungal infections can be treated. Fungicides are prescribed. The vet will establish the best medication, according to the fungus that causes the infection and the condition of the dog. The most frequent fungicides prescribed include ketoconazole and itraconazole. Some infections can go away without treatment, but they may be very unpleasant for your pet, so treatment is recommended.